18 June 2008

NATO Air Support Done

I finished the Jaguar last night.  I'm quite please with the effect considering it was a bit of a rush job.  Photos shortly.

Now I only have to: 
  1. finish the bigger Shellhole Scenics ruined building
  2. build and paint the Important Building for downtown Tuzkhur
  3. paint some civilians
  4. paint a block of ruined buildings.
No problem!

10 June 2008

M1 Abrams


The early M1s had some deficiencies these weren`t found until the first Gulf War when the M1 served alongside the M60A3. The lack of an "infantry phone" at the rear made it difficult for infantry/tank cooperation (the M60A3 had the phone) - this was corrected after the War.

There are references to T72s being able to damage or even knockout M1s but pretty rare! The tank is also vulnerable to RPG7 hits to the rear and top hull/turret.

If you check the Wikipedia entry for the Abrams, there is a pretty good damage assessment section: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M1_Abrams

09 June 2008

Dress Rehearsal

I’m planning on hosting a game this coming Sunday to get in some practice using the rules with the latest (well, 1990s) in high-tech American kit. This will be the first time we’ve tried combined arms ops with the M1 Abrams and the M2 Bradley so I’m keen to find out quite how lethal they are in Arc of Fire.

The Abrams has fantastic armour, it’s fast and it gets all kinds of plusses when firing. The Bradley has fire-power coming out of its ears with a 25mm chain gun (a high rate-of-fire autocannon) and long-range TOW anti-tank guided missiles.

An interesting tactical note is that we will be using the early 1990s Bradley squad organisation. This has a six-man dismount element that doesn’t breakdown into mutually supporting fire teams. The contemporary doctrine assumed that the Bradleys would provide fire support while the dismounts manoeuvred.

This is all very well in theory and the Bradley has plenty of firepower but in the very nature of things terrain that suits infantry often doesn’t suit armoured vehicles. It’s not difficult to conceive of a situation where the infantry enter terrain where the Bradleys can’t easily or safely follow.

Another factor in the big game will be ammunition supply. TOW missiles are bulky (and expensive) so the Bradley doesn’t carry many. To give them the best chance of hitting you need to stand off and engage enemy armour at a distance – not particularly compatible with providing close support to the infantry.

So despite having huge firepower and the ability to engage enemy forces at long range, Richard Baber (our NATO commander) will have some very interesting tactical choices to make.

05 June 2008

Government Air Support

As a semi-detached member of the eastern bloc, Andreivia often pursued an independent line in arms procurement.  Contacts with Argentina led to the purchase of some aged A4 Skyhawks for use by ground attack squadrons of the Andreivian Air Force.  By the early 1990s a single squadron was still flying.

The model is a cheapo kit I picked up for 99p from my local Wilkinson's Hardware a few years ago.  Only now has it been lined in and acquired Andreivian markings. 

I originally tried putting Israeli roundels on the wings and painting over them but I couldn't get adequate coverage to hide the stars.  I ended up scraping off the decals and using the faint marks they left as a guide to paint in the yellow circles by hand.  The serial number is from an old kit decal.